File:Homer British Museum.jpg|thumb|right| Idealized portrayal of Homer dating to the Hellenistic period. British Museum.
'''Homer''' ( , ''Hómēros'') is best known as the author of the ''Iliad
'' and the ''Odyssey
''. He was believed by the ancient Greeks
to have been the first and greatest of the Epic poetry|epic poets
. Author of the first known literature
of Europe, he is central to the Western canon
When he lived, as well as whether he lived at all, is unknown. Herodotus
estimates that Homer lived no more than 400 years before his own time,
[Herodotus [http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/hopper/text?doc=Hdt.+2.53 2.53].]
which would place him at around 850 BCE or later. Life of Homer (Pseudo-Herodotus)|Pseudo-Herodotus
estimates that he was born 622 years before Xerxes I
placed Xerxes' Pontoon Bridges|a pontoon bridge
over the Hellespont
in 480 BCE, which would place him...